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Title: Understanding anger and paranoia in mentally-disordered offenders
Author: Darch, Kayleigh
Awarding Body: University of London
Current Institution: Royal Holloway, University of London
Date of Award: 2013
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Evidence has demonstrated that anger is a risk factor for aggression and violence, and that paranoia can operate as a motivator for violent offending. In spite of this, there has been no research that has examined the emotional experiences of anger and its relationship to paranoid ideation in violent mentally-disordered offender (MOO) populations. This is in the face of evidence that has suggested limited long-term efficacy of anger management and psychosis interventions with MDOs. Experimental paradigms have been developed to measure paranoia with non-clinical populations, and recently the Prisoner's Dilemma Game (PDG) has been validated as a measure of non-clinical paranoia. The current study examined the relationships between anger and paranoia in a sample of 66 male and female MOOs, and aimed to investigate the utility of the PDG as an assessment of paranoia with a forensic population. Participants completed the PDG and self-report measures that examined trait anger, anger expression, trait paranoia, socially desirable responding, anxiety and depression. Results indicated that trait anger and anger expression were associated with paranoia, and that these relationships were not due to possible confounding relationships with social desirability, anxiety or depression. The findings suggested a trend towards gender differences in levels of anger and paranoia. The relationships between anger and paranoia, however, did not differ between males and females. The results indicated that further research is needed to validate the PDG as a behavioural indicator of paranoia with MDOs. The findings were discussed in relation to previous literature, and limitations of the study were highlighted. The clinical implications for assessment, formulation and intervention were considered.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (D.Clin.Psy.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available